Dáil Éireann - Volume 667 - 12 November, 2008

Written Answers. - Road Network.

Deputy Brian Hayes asked the Minister for Transport the list of key road schemes which will be deferred due to budget 2009 cuts; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [39945/08]

Deputy Joe Costello asked the Minister for Transport the impact of budget 2009 cutbacks on the roads programme; the priority road schemes; his views on what should be the priority projects in the roads programme until 2013; and if he will make a statement on the matter [39834/08]

  Deputy Noel Dempsey: I propose to take Questions Nos. 109 and 132 together.

As Minister for Transport, I have responsibility for overall policy and funding in relation to the national roads programme element of Transport 21. The implementation of individual national road projects is a matter for the National Roads Authority (NRA) under the Roads Act 1993 in conjunction with the local authorities concerned.

Under Transport 21, a budget of €1.44 billion has been allocated to the NRA for 2009. The focus for the year will continue to be on the delivery of the Major Inter-urban routes (MIUs), which are on target for completion by 2010. I understand from the NRA that they are currently in the process of drawing up their programme of works for next year based on their allocation of €1.44 billion. It would be inappropriate to comment on specific projects pending the outcome of that exercise.

The 2009 Budget for national roads, while somewhat smaller than 2008, is still a significant amount and is a reflection of this Government’s continued commitment to maintaining investment in transport infrastructure and services at a high level. Clearly, however, the start and completion dates of national road projects which have not yet commenced will be determined by the funding allocation available during the current economic climate.